As teachers and counselors, you know that the elementary school years are important. During the elementary school years, your students build visions of what they desire to do in their lives as they contribute to the workforce. With your help, your students remain open to new career ideas and possibilities. As you work with your students, your students do not make premature career choices or career preparations. For your students, elementary school is a time to build awareness.
As elementary school teachers and counselors, you use career education to promote self-worth, skill development, and decision making strategies. Your activities are designed to build self, family, school, community, and career awareness. You use age-appropriate materials that match your students’ developmental levels. These activities expose your students to a variety of different jobs, career information sources, and the reasons why people work.
When you prepare to develop age-appropriate materials products, tests and tools, you use career models like the National Career Development Guidelines (NCDG). The National Career Development Guidelines (NCDG) have domains, goals, and indicators. Each domain represents a developmental area. Under each domain, there are goals or competencies. For each goal, indicators highlight the knowledge and skills needed to achieve the goal. The National Career Development Guidelines (NCDG) prepares you to make materials that are suitable for your students.
As a elementary school counselors and teachers, you create individual career plans and portfolios. Individual career plans (ICP) –
- Develop self-awareness
- Identify initial career goals and educational plans
- Increase employability and decision making skills
Individual career portfolios summarize career awareness activities and experiences that occur during the school year. In addition to individual career plans and portfolios, you use a variety of resources –
- Career fairs
- Community speakers
- Field trips
- Information interviewing
- Literary works
- Collages, murals
- Educational games
- Job shadowing
- Dramatic presentations
All of the career activities and tools combine academic work with career pathways. Career activities serve as foundations for future skills. As teachers and counselors, you help students build connections between academics and real life situations. You use career education activities to stress the importance of language arts, mathematics, social studies, and science.
You show students that Language Arts have many uses in the work force:
- Listening skills
You provide examples that show how people solve problems when they use Mathematics. Different types of Mathematics include:
In Social Studies, your students learn how skills that are necessary to be successful in the global marketplace. In Social Studies, your students learn about –
Your students learn the importance of Science gaining skills to solve problems. You show your students how applications of Science are used in different industries, such as –
- Automotive industry
The connections between academics and real life situations reinforce, develop, and expand previously learned skills. In summary, as a elementary school teachers and counselors, you help students:
- Know and value self
- Build self-esteem and confidence
- Learn and apply the academic material
- Identify interests and build relationships between the school environment and the work force
- Build academic, communication, problem solving, and social skills
- Increase awareness of the need for future jobs skills
- See the connections between learning in school, academic skills, job related skills, and careers
- See career possibilities
- See themselves as a future contributor to the job force
- Receive empowerment
- Build self-determination
As counselors and teachers, you build self-awareness, family awareness, school awareness, community awareness, career/ work awareness, attitude development, skill development, decision making strategies, and self-worth. You use age-appropriate materials that match the developmental levels of the students. Examples of activities include individual career plans (ICP), individual career portfolios, career days, career fairs, field trips, information interviewing, and library book reports.
After completing career education activities, your students are prone to get higher grades, academic achievement, school involvement, and interpersonal skills. In addition, your students are more adept to complete more complex courses and have higher graduation rates from high school. As your students get older, they will achieve their career visions and goals.
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